By Devon Mitchell
The Texas abortion ban has been at the forefront of the news in the past couple of weeks. Pro-choice activists worry that changes to how Texas handles abortion cases will unravel nearly 50 years of women’s rights stemming from the 1973 Supreme Court decision on Roe V. Wade which decided state regulation of abortions was unconstitutional under the Fourteenth Amendment’s due process clause. Meaning criminalized abortions violate a women’s right to privacy over property. Pro-life activists who often cross over with Evangelicals cite the Bible for why they believe abortions should be illegal. I bet they don’t remember the Bible says a fetus is property too.
In Exodus 21:22-25, a story is told of a pregnant woman who miscarries after suffering injuries after being struck attempting to break up a fight. The miscarriage is not treated like a death. Instead, it is treated like property loss, and a fine is to be paid. Had the woman lost her life, however, the punishment would have been a life for a life.
Evangelicals might make the argument that life begins in the womb. Take Isaiah 49:1-3 as an example, “The LORD called me from the womb. From the innermost parts of my mother, God named me … and said to me, ‘You are my servant Israel, in whom I’ll be glorified.” But there is not a clear statement saying life begins before being born.
Genesis 2:7 does provide a clear start to life, “Then the Lord God took some soil from the ground and formed a man out of it; he breathed life-giving breath into his nostrils and the man began to live.” What Genesis 2:7 gives us that other verses do not is “the man began to live.”
I’m not saying Evangelicals are wrong in interpreting the Bible the way they do. What I am saying is perhaps the Bible contradicts itself, so why are we allowing contradicting texts to make decisions on female reproductive rights. Moreover, why are we allowing Christians such as Catholic Texas Governor Greg Abbott to create laws restricting women’s rights to their own bodies? Hasn’t anyone ever heard of ‘separation of church and state’? Texas clearly hasn’t!